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Will Low GPA Affect Visa Interview?


ahlatsiawa
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I am planning to go for my F1 interview in less than a month. Although my TOEFL and GRE scores are decent, my GPA is a paltry 2.7/4. Will it impede my chances of getting a visa?

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This shouldn't be a concern, as long as you have the acceptance letter, DS-2019 (this is for J-1 visa, actually, I don't know what form they have for the F-1 visa) and proof of financial funds. They will not judge your visa based on your grades, so don't worry!

Edited by I am not sure yet
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For F1 it's the I-20 :D I'm afraid I have to disagree - I think they do consider your GPA (and past academic performance in general) as an indicator of how serious and capable you are. Think about it this way, ideally they want to issue student visas to those who are really here to study, capable of finishing the degree, and then leave. So in that regard, grades do matter a bit, but they're absolutely not the whole picture. An acceptance letter from a respectable university and decent test scores certainly help, and be prepared to answer if they have any questions about your GPA.

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I've seen people get the F-visa after they enrolled in very cheap and not respected courses (often not even in an university, but in a ESL or cooking course). So, as long as you prove you have the money, so you won't have to work, and you are officially enrolled, they won't bother about your grades!

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Thank you for your replies. I do believe I have solid reasons to justify the low GPA. Financial funds are also sufficient.

VioletAyame: You mentioned acceptance letter from a respectable university in your reply. In your opinion does Syracuse make that cut?

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I've seen people get the F-visa after they enrolled in very cheap and not respected courses (often not even in an university, but in a ESL or cooking course). So, as long as you prove you have the money, so you won't have to work, and you are officially enrolled, they won't bother about your grades!

Yes. I'm not saying that no one who is not qualified has ever got a student visa to come to the US. It happens. I know people like that too, and I also heard that the interview has gotten quite lax since the US economy went down and they need more money from international students to subsidize the budget cut a from which a lot of colleges suffer, but it's just anecdotal. The OP asked if grades matter, and according to the US Department of State website, they do: travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/study-exchange/student.html

 

 

Additional Documentation May Be Required

Review the instructions for how to apply for a visa on the website of the embassy or consulate where you will apply. Additional documents may be requested to establish that you are qualified. For example, additional requested documents may include evidence of:

  • Your academic preparation, such as:
    • Transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates from schools you attended; and
    • Scores from tests that your U.S. school required, such as the TOEFL, SAT, GRE, or GMAT;
  • Your intent to depart the United States upon completion of the course of study; and
  • How you will pay all educational, living and travel costs.

 

So yes, I'm not saying you absolutely won't get a visa if you have bad grades or go to a medicocre place, but it does increase the risk. In case of OP I do think he/she will be fine though.

 

Thank you for your replies. I do believe I have solid reasons to justify the low GPA. Financial funds are also sufficient.

VioletAyame: You mentioned acceptance letter from a respectable university in your reply. In your opinion does Syracuse make that cut?

Syracuse is a perfectly respectable university! Like I said above, I don't think you have cause to worry. They may ask question and you should have an answer, but with the acceptance letter and financial documents, you should be good. Good luck!

Edited by VioletAyame
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